[22 Paradise Rd., Northampton, Mass.]

T. S.Eliot
Letter 112.
February 21, 1942
Dearest Emily

Your letter 115 of January 31 arrived this week. You seem to be multiplying your own activities pretty recklessly: the committee for extra-mural lectures sounds as if it imposed a good deal of routine work upon you, apart from any speaking you may do yourself; and I very much hope that they provide you with the secretarial assistance you ought to have.

ISecond World Warthe Pacific War;d2 haveCripps, Sir Richard Staffordappointed to cabinet;a2 felt rather cheered by the cabinet changes this week,1 though feeling the strain, like everyone else, of the situation in the Pacific.2 Apart from that area, we seem to be at an interim moment, not likely to know for another month perhaps what the next focal point is going to be. IEast CokerTSE recites for Czechs;c2 did my reading of East Coker on Tuesday to the united English and Czech P.E.N. Clubs, before a gathering of mixed nationalities, withDobrée, Bonamychairs TSE's reading;c3 Bonamy Dobrée in the chair. I think I read it fairly well. After that the Czech Minister of Education recited the Czech version, which, being accompanied on the piano by the composer of the music, took a good deal longer than mine. Whether he read it well I do not know; he certainly put a lot of energy into it; and I could not help thinking that it would be gratifying if cabinet ministers of larger nations took as much interest in literature as that. He confided to me afterwards that he could have done better without the music; and the musician explained to me that the music would have gone off better if the reciter had kept time with him better: but it was all very satisfactory, with tea afterwards and a great many earnest foreigners and a number of natives whom I had not seen for a long time and did not much want to see. I then dined alone with Bonamy (who is now engaged in army educational work and likes it). IBukhari, Zulfiqar Ali;a7 paid a call on Mr. Bokhari on Wednesday, dinedEvery, George;b5 with George Every on Thursday, andLiterary Society, The;b3 attended a lunch of the Literary Society on Friday, withFaber, Geoffreybut eventually elected;i4 the pleasure of learning that Faber had been elected a member (itHamilton, General Sir Ian;a3 had been a little awkward because old Sir Ian Hamilton had told him that he had been elected when he had only been nominated). I go back to town for the night tomorrow (Sunday) afternoon; inUniversity of GlasgowTSE's W. P. Ker Memorial Lecture;a1 order to make an early start Monday morning for Glasgow: I only hope that the weather will be favourable and the train punctual, so that I may get there in time for dinner, and not, as when I went to Newcastle, have to go without. My lecture is Tuesday afternoon: I shall not stay any longer in that part of the world than I can help, at this time of year – I have spent some coupons on new warm underwear and another woolen shirt.

I agree with what you say about the dangers of generalisation about Education; one of the easy errors is to expect more of an educational ‘system’ than it will bear, and put upon it responsibilities which belong elsewhere – in the family, the local environment, and the general values of the society in which it functions. It is too much to expect a healthy educational system in an unhealthy society; and if people made more reasonable demands of education, they would be more likely to get from it what it can properly give. There have been some interesting articles in Harper’s Magazine from time to time. It is certainly not my business to concern myself with the details of the school system, and that sort of thing; but rather with the fundamental and perhaps unexamined assumptions.

I'To the Indians Who Died in Africa by T. S. Eliot'copied for EH;a3 encloseSorabji, Corneliaverses for her Red Cross Book;a5 (as a matter of mild curiosity) a copy of the verses I have done for Cornelia Sorabji’s Red Cross Book.3 NowJameson, Margaret Stormimportunes TSE for American Red Cross Book;a1 Miss Storm Jameson4 has asked me to do something for an American Red Cross book: I told her that I might have time to think about it by the end of May: but'Note on War Poetry, A';a1 any verses I did for that would not aim at the American reader any more than the British – unlike these, which are directly intended for Indian consumption.5

Do try not to overwork!

I will send some communication to Jean – I suppose Scripps College, Claremont, is enough address for her.

Your devoted

1.On 19 Feb., Sir Stafford Cripps joined Churchill’s War Cabinet; Lord Beaverbrook, recently appointed as Minister of War Production, resigned on grounds of ill health.

2.Singapore surrendered to the Japanese on 15 Feb.

3.Enclosed: TS copy of ‘For the Indians Who Died in Africa’:

A man’s destination is his own village,

His own fire, and his wife’s cooking;

To sit in front of his own door at sunset

And see his grandson, and his dog’s great-grandson

Playing in the dust together.

Scarred but secure, he has many memories

(Which return at the hour of conversation,

The warm, or the cool hour, according to the climate)

Of foreign men, who fought in foreign places,

Foreign to each other.

A man’s destination is not his destiny.

Every country is home to one man

And exile to another. Where a man dies bravely

At one with his destiny, that land soil is his.

Let his village remember.

This was not our your land, nor yours ours: but a village in the Midlands

And one in the Five Rivers, may have the same graveyard.

Let those who go home tell the same story of you:

Of action with a common purpose, action

None the less fruitful if neither you nor I

Know, until the moment after death,

What is the fruit of action.

4.MargaretJameson, Margaret Storm Storm Jameson (1891–1986), novelist and journalist. Daughter of a master-mariner, she was educated at Leeds University (the first woman to graduate in English, and with a first-class degree) and at King’s College London, where she held a research fellowship. Her MA thesis was published as Modern Drama in Europe (1920). Her novels include Cousin Honoré (1940), Cloudless May (1944), The Journal of Mary Hervey (1945) and her summa, the two-volume Journey from the North (1969–70). See Jennifer Birkett, Margaret Storm Jameson: A Life (2009).

5.See TSE to Storm Jameson, 12 Feb. 1942; and ‘A Note on War Poetry’, in London Calling, ed. Storm Jameson (1942), 237–8.

Bukhari, Zulfiqar Ali, presents TSE with ornate umbrella, embarrasses him with second, his umbrellas, commissions 'Duchess of Malfy' broadcast, commissions Tennyson broadcast,

1.ZulfiqarBukhari, Zulfiqar Ali Ali Bokhari/Bukhari (1904–75), born in Peshawar, was Director of the Delhi Broadcasting Station of All India Radio before removing to London in July 1937. Director of the Indian Section of the BBC Eastern Service, 1940–5; instrumental in recruiting George Orwell. In 1945 he returned to India as Director of All India Radio Station, Calcutta; later to Karachi to work as Controller in Broadcasting for Radio Pakistan. See Talking to India, ed. Orwell (1943); Ruvani Ranasinha, South Asian Writers in Twentieth Century Britain: Culture in Translation (Oxford, 2007); W. J. West, Orwell: The War Broadcasts (1985).

Cripps, Sir Richard Stafford, Leonard Woolf situates within Labour, appointed to cabinet, makes TSE's cold worse,

8.SirCripps, Sir Richard Stafford Richard Stafford Cripps (1889–1952), lawyer and Labour Party politician; co-founder in 1932 and leader of the Socialist League, he was at this time opposed to rearmament.

Dobrée, Bonamy, Criterion monthly meeting regular, photograph of his home on TSE's mantel, in thumbnail, and Flint take TSE for farewell lunch, as country squire, promulgates Credit Reform, sings songs with TSE, shilling life of, and 'Byron', doomed to American lecture tour, reduced to doing his own gardening, detects life in Willard Thorp, farewell lunch for, training gunner officers, chairs TSE's reading,
see also Dobrées, the

3.Bonamy DobréeDobrée, Bonamy (1891–1974), scholar and editor: see Biographical Register.

East Coker, its Kensington origins, and TSE's cousins' visit, TSE's own plan to visit eponymous village, which he does, TSE returns to East Coker, TSE on writing, and Yeats's Purgatory, needs polishing, ready for printer, EH sent, decision to print in NEW, TSE on its mood, sales, reception, EH yet to receive, EH promised shilling edition, broadcast by BBC Eastern Service, draft inevitably bought by Gallup, TSE recites for Czechs, EH recounts recitation of, TSE's recording of,
Every, George, TSE's affection for, invites TSE to Kelham, consulted on TSE's BBC talk, surprises TSE in London, possible reader of Boutwood Lectures, at Kelham,

4.GeorgeEvery, George Every, SSM (1909–2003), historian and poet: see Biographical Register.

Faber, Geoffrey, made TSE's literary executor, described for EH, as friend, overawed by Joyce, recounts the Eliots' dinner-party, discusses international situation with TSE, his annual effort to diet, introduced to TSE by Whibley, favours TSE taking Norton Professorship, suggests garden-party for TSE, mislays key to Hale correspondence, writes to TSE about separation, which he helps TSE over, blesses Scotland tour with whisky, victim of Holmesian prank, favours 'The Archbishop Murder Case', Times articles on Newman, Russell Square proclaims his gentlemanly standards, forgives TSE and Morley's prank, as tennis-player, champion of Haig biography, social insecurities, and the Faber family fortune, advertises 'Pollicle Dogs and Jellicle Cats', at lavish lunch for Dukes, relieved that 'Work in Progress' progresses, and JDH, needs persuading over Nightwood, on Edward VIII's abdication, Old Buffer's Dinner for, wins at Monopoly, and the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle, thrilled by complimentary tickets, The Family Reunion described to, in line to read Family Reunion, has mumps, composes Alcaics from sickbed, at TSE and JDH's dinner, shares EH's Family Reunion criticism, on TSE's dinner-party bearing, discusses F&F's wartime plans, on meeting Ralph Hodgson, asks TSE to stay on during war, takes TSE to Oxford, argues with Major-General Swinton, and Purchase Tax exertions, and Literary Society membership, TSE's wartime intimacy with, drops teeth on beach, offers criticisms of 'Rudyard Kipling', falsely promised Literary Society membership, but eventually elected, helps revise TSE's Classical Association address, reports to Conversative Education Committee, deputed to America on publishing business, returned from America, Ada too ill to see, discusses National Service on BBC, depended on for breakfast, as fire-watching companion, and TSE rearrange attic at 23 Russell Square, recommends blind masseuse to TSE, in nursing home, and the Spender–Campbell spat, on TSE's Order of Merit, approached for essay on TSE, seeks to protect TSE's serenity, as Captain Kidd, wins fancy-dress prize, TSE's trip to Spain with, and National Book League, receives knighthood, on TSE's paroxysmal tachycardia, dies, his death,
see also Fabers, the

11.GeoffreyFaber, Geoffrey Faber (1889–1961), publisher and poet: see Biographical Register.

Hamilton, General Sir Ian, visits F&F,

9.GeneralHamilton, General Sir Ian Sir Ian Hamilton (1853–1947), distinguished army officer; sometimes unfairly blamed for the failure of the Gallipoli Campaign during WW1. F&F were to publish his memoir When I Was a Boy (1939).

Jameson, Margaret Storm, importunes TSE for American Red Cross Book, to which TSE contributes 'verses',

4.MargaretJameson, Margaret Storm Storm Jameson (1891–1986), novelist and journalist. Daughter of a master-mariner, she was educated at Leeds University (the first woman to graduate in English, and with a first-class degree) and at King’s College London, where she held a research fellowship. Her MA thesis was published as Modern Drama in Europe (1920). Her novels include Cousin Honoré (1940), Cloudless May (1944), The Journal of Mary Hervey (1945) and her summa, the two-volume Journey from the North (1969–70). See Jennifer Birkett, Margaret Storm Jameson: A Life (2009).

Literary Society, The, TSE's reasons for joining, comical evening with, TSE's efforts to elect GCF to, finally admits GCF,
'Note on War Poetry, A',
Second World War, the prospect of, F&F plans in the event of, Britain's preparations for, prognostications as to its outbreak, and The Family Reunion, and the policy of appeasement, and transatlantic tourism, evacuation imminent, TSE discusses its outbreak with Dutchman, TSE refrains from commenting on, TSE's thoughts on, its effect on TSE, the 'Winter War', the 'Phoney War', Molotov–Ribbentrop pact, rationing, evacuation, seems continuous with First World War, invasion of Poland, invasion of Denmark and Norway, Chamberlain's resignation, Italy's declaration of war, Dunkirk, The Blitz, Battle of Cape Matapan, Operation Barbarossa, Greece enters war, Pearl Harbor, the Pacific War, Libyan campaign, North African campaign, and TSE's decision to remain in England, in relation to the First, prospect of its end unsettles, and returning to London, bombing of German cities, its effect on TSE's work, prognostications as to its end, the Little Blitz, Operation Overlord, V-1 Cruise Missile strikes, Operation Market Garden, and continental privations, and post-war European prospects, The Battle of the Bulge, possibility of post-war pandemic, V-2 Bombs, concentration camps, Germany's surrender, VE Day, and post-war Anglo-American relations, VJ Day, atomic bomb, its long-term economic consequences,
Sorabji, Cornelia, appeals to TSE, going blind, runs into bus, verses for her Red Cross Book,

4.ElenaSorabji, Cornelia Richmond invited TSE to meet Cornelia Sorabji (1866–1954) – barrister and prominent social reformer, and author of a book of reminiscences entitled India Calling – at their London home, 3 Sumner Place, S.W.7, on Fri., 29 Mar. Sorabji’s ‘Note re Orthodox Hindus and Protection for Religion’ lamented one specific aspect of the Report on the Indian Constitutional Reform, to the effect that the protection accorded to religion since 1858 (Queen Victoria’s Proclamation) would seem to have been deliberately withdrawn.

'To the Indians Who Died in Africa by T. S. Eliot', conceived as epigram, TSE sits on his verses, copied for EH, whom his verses please,
University of Glasgow, TSE's W. P. Ker Memorial Lecture, described,